Meet Dave

PUBLISHED : Sunday, 28 December, 2008, 12:00am
UPDATED : Sunday, 28 December, 2008, 12:00am

Meet Dave

Elizabeth Banks, Gabrielle Union, Scott Caan

Director: Brian Robbins

Eddie Murphy's bank manager must be pleased. For while the actor's many talents have been seen and heard in recent years thanks to the Shrek franchise and his more serious turn in Dreamgirls (2006), the man continues to rake in the dollars by taking on - apparently - any gig thrown his way.

Meet Dave joins a chorus line of dud movies such as The Adventures of Pluto Nash (2002) and Norbit (2007) in which Murphy turns up, rolls his eyes a bit, does a bit of yelling - and then apparently bolts off to cash his cheque.

There's a semi-funny premise here: an alien nation facing extinction due to lack of salt sends a team inside a human-shaped spaceship (Murphy) to rob planet Earth - but the film is hamstrung by its (or the studio executives') need to go all warm and fuzzy.

Hence the aliens, who initially loathe the creatures they are sent to wipe out, fall for our quirky charms.

And while you can excuse the supporting cast for ploughing through such a leaden script, one would have hoped that Murphy would known better.

Evidence of a little effort on his part might have helped, for one. Instead, neither of his two roles - he plays a spaceship ands its captain - shows any signs of life at all.

Granted, no one was expecting a masterpiece - but as Innerspace (1987) showed us, a lot of fun can be had with an absurd concept.

At the end of Meet Dave, you're left wondering how some films get made at all. Extras: cast confessions (but you know they are not really telling the truth).